Are you watching Downton Abbey?

Historical fiction isn’t my favorite genre, but I love Downton Abbey, which was created by Julian Fellowes, who also wrote the screenplay for the 2001 Robert Altman film Gosford Park. Both films explore class and changing social mores in early twentieth century England. The show originally aired as a 10-part series in England (it has been renewed for a second season), and its now airing in the United States on PBS as a four-part Masterpiece Classic. Filmed partially on location at Highclere Castle, the interiors and set design are worth checking out even if history, romance and intrigue aren’t your cup-of-tea. Curiously enough, I think the sparse, monochromatic servant’s quarters (above) might be more of-the-moment style-wise than the sumptuous rooms inhabited by the Earl of Grantham and his family. If that’s not enough of a carrot, how about the cast, which includes Elizabeth McGovern, Hugh Bonneville, Maggie Smith and Dan Stevens.* Are you watching? What do you think?

This room is VERY upstairs.

* Uh oh, I just realized I only named actors who happen to portray upstairs-folk.

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5 Responses to “Are you watching Downton Abbey?”

  1. Oh yes, I love it! But then I love all history as presented by Masterpiece Theatre. Only problem is I’m also watching (hooked on) Desperate Housewives…so I switch between the two!
    Did you know that Upstairs Downstairs has been redone and will be a four part series in, I think,April? That is probably the #1 MP show ever…..

  2. Watching it and loving it. Wish there were more than two more episodes!

  3. I’ll have to rent Upstairs Downstairs to tide me over until the next season of Downton Abbey has been released. (Haven’t watched DH in a long time).

  4. I’m watching and enjoying. Agree about the downstairs sets. More contemporary, spare, etc. Looking forward to Upstairs Downstairs but I loved the original so much, and yes, I watched it when it was originally broadcast. That and The Forsyte Saga, which was wonderful and also a really fun series of books to read.

    PS: I just mentioned you briefly with link at my blog.

  5. I am loving Downton Abby. Great show and fun to watch on Sunday nights. Thanks for posting these photos. Making me wish I could go to England and do a castle tour. I’d be posting them on
    DesignDestinations.wordpress.com for sure.

    Sure would hate to wear fussy clothes like they did in this era. They all soooooo uncomfortable.